The Awesome Side Of NextBus

15 Feb

Okay, honestly. That last post was pretty lame. Even when I was writing it, I kinda knew it – like, I was basically saying, “Waaa, I have this amazing technological innovation in my life that allows me to literally save days of waiting per year, but my time management skills suck so hard that I can’t get it together to use it effectively, so I get stressed.”

Blerg, me! In penance, and in honor of Michael Smith, the director of engineering at NextBus who was cool enough to write a funny comment (and not tell me to stuff myself like I probably would’ve), I thought I’d list the ways in which NextBus makes my life way better. They are as varied as they are numerous.

1) Just yesterday, I was rolling up to market on the 71 and thought I’d catch an N to get around to the Embarcadero.  At Van Ness , I checked NextBus on my Phone, saw that there was an inbound N train underground in 3 minutes – I jumped off the bus, bounced down the stairs, and was at Hi-Dive ten minutes later. That kind of Muni-Ninjary is only possible thanks to the reliability of NextBus.

2) A week ago, I was taking a cab home from downtown, already sweating the climbing fare-counter. When I came to Cole Valley, I checked NextBus, and saw that a 6 was coming to Cole and Parnassus in two minutes.  I had the driver pull over, jumped out, and rode the bus the last mile and a half to my door.  The Cabbie didn’t wind up stuck out in the avenues, and I saved four bucks.

3) When I’m at school practicing, I’ll frequently finish, pack up, then check NextBus and see that I have 17 minutes or so until my next bus arrives. So I’ll use that time to play piano, rather than walking out and waiting on Haight with the British tourists and the pee and the Road Warriors.

4) When I go anywhere that requires meeting someone on the way downtown, we can use NextBus to coordinate our schedules, and they can get onto a bus that I’m already on. Very cool.

5) Whenever Jaegle and I go to get burritos at Papalote, we check to see when the 43 is coming by so that we time the run – we’ll grab our burritos, hop the bus, and be back to her place in time for Idol. It is a flawless system, and we have it down to a science – all of which would not be possible without Nextbus.

6) Ever since the corner store on my block closed, my roommates and I have to go down to Kirkham and hit Roxy whenever we need snacks, beer, or other groceries.  It’s three blocks downhill, and not really that convenient – however, thanks to NextBus, I can pull off the following move: Check the outgoing and ingoing 6 schedule, do the math (a beer/chips/tomato run requires about 4 minutes between buses). I’ll then hop the bus down, pick up what I need, jump out the door and, with a minimum of waiting, catch the 6 going back up.  Thanks to Nextbus, Grocery runs can take about eight minutes total – it’s like having a chairlift running up and down our hill.

I could go on, but you get the picture. Please disregard my previous complaining. Technology can make us more scattered, and mastering it can be stressful, but on the whole, it is a wonderful thing. As my friend Anne pointed out, knowledge can be dark, horrible fruit – I’d add that it can also greatly expedite the purchasing of delicious burritos.

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